Risk of harm to vulnerable adults, babies and children from coin or button batteries in hearing aids and other hearing devices
Babies and young children (under five years) or vulnerable children or adults can suffer serious injuries if they ingest coin or button batteries or poke them into their nostrils and ears.
Batteries can become lodged in the narrow oesophagus and cause rapid tissue necrosis, perforation and haemorrhage.
- In 2019 an alert was issued that brought to attention the risk to children and the need to treat this as a medical emergency
- If you live or care for a baby, a child under five or a vulnerable child or adult then please enquire about secure battery compartments
- Larger lithium batteries have the greatest potential to cause harm including death
- Make sure your hearing aid batteries and tools are stored safely and away from the reach of vulnerable adults or children
- Hearing aids, cochlear implants, bone conduction hearing devices (BCHD) and similar equipment use zinc air batteries which also present a significant risk
If you suspect ingestion, treat as a medical emergency.